Critic Consensus: Compelling, well-crafted storytelling and a judicious sense of terror ensure Steven Spielberg's Jaws has remained a benchmark in the art of delivering modern blockbuster thrills.
Based on Peter Benchley's best-selling novel, Steven Spielberg's 1975 shark saga set the standard for the New Hollywood popcorn blockbuster while frightening millions of moviegoers out of the water. One early summer night on fictional Atlantic resort Amity Island, Chrissie decides to take a moonlight skinny dip while her friends party on the beach. Yanked suddenly below the ocean surface, she never returns. When pieces of her wash ashore, Police Chief Brody (Roy Scheider) suspects the worst, but Mayor Vaughn (Murray Hamilton), mindful of the lucrative tourist trade and the approaching July 4th holiday, refuses to put the island on a business-killing shark alert. After the shark dines on a few more victims, the Mayor orders the local fishermen to catch the culprit. Satisfied with the shark they find, the greedy Mayor reopens the beaches, despite the warning from visiting ichthyologist Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) that the attacks were probably caused by a far more formidable Great White. One more fatality later, Brody and Hooper join forces with flinty old salt Quint (Robert Shaw), the only local fisherman willing to take on a Great White--especially since the price is right. The three ride off on Quint's boat "The Orca," soon coming face to teeth with the enemy. ~ Lucia Bozzola, Rovi … More
Watch it now
as Martin Brody
as Matt Hooper
as Ellen Brody
as Mayor Larry Vaughn
as Policeman Hendricks
as Chrissie Watkins
as Michael Brody
as Estuary Victim
as Sean Brody
as Mrs. Kintner
as Alex Kintner
as Ben Gardner
as Medical Examiner
as Harbor Master
as Iteisel/Mr. Wiseman
News & Interviews for Jaws
No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.Login
Critic Reviews for Jaws
I don't think there's a more exciting talent at work right now than Spielberg, an authentic moviemaking prodigy, and perhaps his worst problem from June 20, 1975, on will be preventing success from making a nervous or artistic wreck of him.
Director Steven Spielberg has immeasurably improved the bestselling Peter Benchley potboiler novel.
Spielberg had paced the film beautifully so that one is always on edge, tensed for those scary moments that turn out to be false alarms, and left somehow totally unprepared for the real shocks.
It may be the most cheerfully perverse scare movie ever made. Even while you're convulsed with laughter you're still apprehensive, because the editing rhythms are very tricky, and the shock images loom up huge, right on top of you.
The result is a fast-paced, straight-line thriller that moves without pause toward the climactic contest at sea between three men and a 25-foot, 3-ton great while killer shark.
Audience Reviews for Jaws
Steven Spielberg's classic monster movie is a supremely accomplished slice of popular entertainment and one of my enduring favourites. His directorial expertise shines as he perfectly manipulates the mood of the film aided by John Williams' frankly perfect score. He contrasts the ferocious attacks with their broiling red stained surf and hysterical screaming with the serene peacefulness of the lapping moonlit waves from the very first scene, and uses misdirection and comic asides to engineer a tangible sense of tension as you wait for the shark to appear. Of course, the clunkily mechanical beast that completely fails to recreate the grace of the real animals is easy to criticise, but for the most part Jaws' presence is hinted at through a clever combination of first person camera work, reappearing barrels and Williams' music intercut with real shark footage and it works brilliantly. The characters are also fantastic, particularly during the bonding scene when Quint intensely recounts his experience of the USS Indianapolis, and there are so many wonderfully quotable lines I could probably recite the entire film from beginning to end. Another of the few films that I could never tire of seeing.
The classic thriller never gets old, handled superbly well in the open waters by Spielberg and carried with charisma by its lead actors. 'Jaws' will never fail to entertain, and still stands as one of the greatest thrillers of all time.
"Jaws" is considered one of the greatest movies of all time. Number 56 on AFI's top 100, number 2 on their list of Top Thrills, and a few years ago Bravo ran a Top 100 Scary movies of All Time with "Jaws" as number 1. Hell, can you even get in a pool without doing the music when you sneak up on someone? This is a very iconic movie that's perfect as a good Halloween time flick for a few jumps. The movie is about a great white shark that terrorizes a small Ocean side town. Three guys then set out to kill the shark. Chief Brody(Roy Scheider), Hooper(Richard Dreyfuss), and local fisherman Quint(Robert Shaw) lead the way and are all three fantastic characters lead by great performances. This is Spielberg first true Blockbuster(and considered Hollywood's first Summer Blockbuster), and really sets the stage for the great work he would continue to make for the next 30+ years. I recently bought this on Blu Ray as it was completely remastered and restored and had read how this is the absolute best this has ever look. It looks fantastic and like it was made last week, not 37 years ago. Holds up amazingly well, and a movie that should be passed on generation to generation. Can't wait for Grant to be old enough to enjoy this with me and scare him every time we go swimming.
|Quint:||It proves that you wealthy college boys don't have the education enough to admit you're wrong.|
|Chief Martin Brody:||Smile, you son of a bitch.|
|Chief Martin Brody:||You're gonna need a bigger boat!|
|Chief Martin Brody:||Smile, you son of a bitch.|
Discuss Jaws on our Movie forum!